Project properties

Title How old is this tropical forest tree? (And how to estimate that?)
Group Forest Ecology and Forest Management Group
Project type thesis
Credits 27-36
Supervisor(s) Prof. Dr. P.A. (Pieter) Zuidema
Examiner(s) Prof.Dr. F.J.J.M (Frans) Bongers
Contact info Pieter.zuidema@wur.nl
https://www.wageningenur.nl/en/Persons/dr.-PA-Pieter-Zuidema.htm
Begin date 2018/01/01
End date
Description There�s a lot of discussion about the (maximum) ages of trees in tropical forests. Some scientists consider that thousand-year old trees are rather common, while others believe this is unlikely. Apart from this fundamental questions on maximum tree ages, understanding the age structures of tropical forest trees is important to understand carbon dynamics and simulate carbon dynamics. And as tropical forests play such an important role in the carbon cycle and in climate systems, such understanding is relevant. Luckily some tropical tree species produce high-quality annual rings and their age can be accurately determined. But not all tropical trees produce annual rings and age estimates from tree rings in the tropics are still scarce. Therefore, age estimates for most species still need to be done based on measurements from permanent sample plots where trees are periodically re-measured. The goal of this internship is to improve age estimates from plot-based measurements using tree-ring data for 5 tropical tree species from Thailand for which both ages from tree rings and plot data are available. You will be developing simple individual simulation models, varying the patterns of growth and mortality to obtain age patterns that are comparable to those obtained from tree rings.

Keywords: Population and forest dynamics/ Tree ring analyses and wood anatomy / Modelling / Asia / Tropical zone
Used skills
Requirements FEM-30306 Forest Ecology and Forest Management; REG-31806 Ecological Methods I;